2018 Mercedes-Benz Maybach

2018 Mercedes-Benz Maybach Review

If the regular S-Class just isn't classy enough, there's the Maybach.
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by Mark Takahashi
Edmunds Editor

Edmunds expert review

If you're one of the rare individuals who wants more features, refinement and performance than a Mercedes-Benz S-Class delivers, you're in luck. The 2018 Mercedes-Benz Maybach Sedan is an excellent upgrade. It's almost twice the price of the base S-Class on which it is based, but for the money you get pretty much every S-Class option available and many that are exclusive to the Maybach.

In a way, though, you could view the Maybach as a value play. It competes with other ultra-premium luxury sedans from Rolls-Royce and Bentley that cost perhaps a third more. Compared to the competition, the Maybach benefits from more technological items that enhance comfort and performance as well as add some automated driving and advanced safety features.

Holding it back, however, is its similarity to the more common S-Class. In a segment in which exclusivity weighs heavily, this is one of the Maybach's few drawbacks.



What's new for 2018

For 2018, the Maybach sedan receives freshened styling, more powerful high-beam headlights, the latest COMAND infotainment system, wireless charging for front and rear seats, and Mercedes' Energizing Comfort system.

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Considering that both the Maybach S 560 and S 650 are identically outfitted, your decision will come down to power and performance. The S 560 has more power than most drivers will ever need and it also benefits from all-wheel drive. The rear-wheel-drive-only S 650's price premium isn't worth it unless you want the S 650 purely for bragging rights.



Trim levels & features

The 2018 Mercedes-Benz Maybach Sedan is available in S 560 4Matic and S 650 trims. The S 560 4Matic is powered by a turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 (463 horsepower, 516 pound-feet of torque) that is paired to a nine-speed automatic transmission. Mercedes' 4Matic all-wheel-drive system is included. The S 650 upgrades to a turbocharged 6.0-liter V12 (621 hp, 738 lb-ft) mated to a seven-speed transmission that sends power to the rear wheels.

The comprehensive list of standard features is identical for both trims, starting with 20-inch wheels, LED exterior lighting, automatic wipers, soft-close doors, a hands-free trunklid, an adaptive air suspension, a panoramic sunroof, a heated windshield, and keyless entry and ignition.

On the inside, you get a head-up display, four-zone automatic climate control, extensive premium leather upholstery, a heated wood- and leather-trimmed steering wheel, wood interior trim, heated and ventilated multicontour front and rear seats with memory and massage functions, a power footrest for the right rear seat, heated armrests, power rear sunshades, and heated rear seats. You'll also find an IWC analog clock, a 12.3-inch virtual gauge display, interior ambient lighting, and an air fragrancer with the Energizing Comfort system, which combines audio, climate, fragrance and massage to enhance comfort.

Also included on the Maybach are a household power outlet, a 12.3-inch display, Mercedes' COMAND infotainment system, a navigation system, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, wireless charging pads and a 13-speaker Burmester premium audio system.

On the advanced safety feature and driver assist front, you get automatic high beams, a surround-view camera system, a night-vision camera system, automatic speed limit adjustment, an automated parking system, adaptive cruise control, forward and cross-traffic collision warning with automatic braking, emergency evasive steering, active blind-spot assist, active lane-change assist, lane keeping and crosswind assist, a pre-collision hearing protection system, airbags built into the rear shoulder belts, and a drowsy-driver monitoring system with emergency stop assist.

Options include various wheel and interior trim choices; Magic Sky Control, which offers a dimmable sunroof tint; a rear center console, which reduces passenger capacity to four; dual rear entertainment systems; folding rear-seat tables; a refrigerated box between the rear seatbacks; heated and cooled cupholders; and silver Champagne flutes from Robbe & Berking.



Driving

The Maybach S 650 accelerates with smooth determination. It won't pin you to the seats, but it is most certainly impressive. The handling is surprisingly tidy and confidence-inspiring, as is braking.

Comfort

The cabin is as quiet as you'll experience at any price, and the multicontour seats are probably more comfortable than anything you have at home. With massage functions and the integrated Energizing Comfort system, it's like having your own personal mobile spa.

Interior

The materials quality is impeccable, and everything inside has a satisfying heft to it. There are a lot of buttons and controls that may take some getting used to. But with a little time, operating the many systems becomes intuitive.

Utility

The trunk holds just 12.3 cubic feet of trunk space, so you'll need to send your vintage Louis Vuitton steamer trunk ahead with your staff. The good news, however, is that there are plenty of places to store your personal items (Champagne, caviar, blinis, etc.) inside.

Technology

Mercedes' COMAND has a ton of features and takes a little getting used to, but it can eventually get easy to use. The numerous advanced safety features function well, but the automated driving assistants aren't as good as Tesla's Autopilot or Cadillac's Super Cruise.

Edmunds expert review process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.